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Record shorter stays in emergency departments

Hon Tony Ryall

Minister of Health

25 February 2014       Media Statement       

Record shorter stays in emergency departments

Public hospitals are delivering emergency department treatment faster than ever before, according to the latest quarterly health target results released today.

“In the last quarter, 94 per cent of patients across New Zealand were either admitted, discharged, or transferred from an emergency department within six hours of arriving. This is up almost 2 per cent on the previous quarter and close to the national target of 95 per cent,” says Heath Minister Tony Ryall.

“This is the highest result since targets began, meaning that public health services are providing New Zealanders with emergency healthcare faster than ever before.

“Among the DHBs, Waikato and Capital and Coast stood out as the biggest improvers - up 6.9 per cent and 6.2 per cent on the last quarter, respectively.  MidCentral also made significant progress – up 4.9 per cent on the last quarter,” says Mr Ryall.

The update also shows that four health targets have been met with:
• DHBs delivering 79,785 elective surgery discharges in the year to date - 3554 more than planned;
• 91 per cent of eight-month-olds fully immunised;
• all cancer patients who were ready-for-treatment waiting less than four weeks for radiotherapy or chemotherapy;
• and 95 per cent of patients who smoke offered support to quit when seen by a health practitioner in a public hospital.

“There will always be room for improvement across some targets, but overall, Kiwis can have confidence in continued progress across a range of key health targets from their public health services,” says Mr Ryall.

A copy of the latest health target results has been published in newspapers, and is also available on the Ministry of Health website.

ENDS

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